NORFOLK, Va. (Oct. 13, 2016) — Carlton Farmer has become the community liaison for St. Mary’s Home, coordinating volunteers who assist in many ways with the children and young adults who live at the nonprofit.
Farmer has been with St. Mary’s in various capacities since 2010. He has worked as a recreational therapy assistant, recreational therapy team leader and a direct support professional, or DSP. Most recently, he worked as a part-time DSP for St. Mary’s while also working as a teaching assistant and lead teacher during the summers at the Home’s school, which operates under a partnership with the REACH (Raising Expectations and Abilities for Children with Complex Health Needs) program of Southeastern Cooperative Educational Programs.
“My days of work do not feel like work at all and are filled with connecting those who live at St Mary’s with people from the community,” Farmer said. For example, volunteers may read to the children, spending one-on-one time with them or help with programs at the Home that include music, art, dance, pottery and more.
Farmer holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Old Dominion University. As community liaison, he succeeds Shirley Justice, who retired earlier this year.